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Ranger's Home in the Park

  • Cumberland Lodge is mostly a Georgian 'Gothic Revival' mansion in the middle of Windsor Great Park in East Berkshire.
  • After the Civil War, the Lord Protector. Oliver Cromwell, sold off parts of the Great Park. A man named James Byfield bought the land and built the 1st house.
  • In 1670, King Charles II took back the land and made the house into the home of the Ranger of Windsor Great Park.
  • The Ranger looks after the park and the deer. The office was usually given to a close friend of the monarch.
  • The famous 1st Duke of Marlborough and his bossy wife, Sarah, lived there in late Stuart Times. Sarah was a good friend of Queen Anne, but she was always telling her what to do. So they fell out.
  • The Duke of Cumberland doubled the size of the house in 1759. That is why it is called Cumberland Lodge. He liked to breed race horses there & kept a small zoo.
  • The Prince Regent (later called King George IV) was going to live there, but Parliament would not give him the money he wanted to do it up. So he lived at the Royal Lodge nearby instead.
  • Half of the house burnt down in 1869. After it was rebuilt, Queen Victoria’s daughter, Helena, and her husband, Prince Christian (from Denmark) moved in.
  • In 1936, politicians met at the Lodge and agreed that King Edward VIII should abdicate because he wanted to marry a divorced American lady.
  • After the Second World War, the present Queen’s parents let the house out to St. Catherine’s College. Roald Dahl went to a conference there and decided to use it in part of his story about the Big Friendly Giant.


    © Nash Ford Publishing 2004; Rev. 2017. All Rights Reserved.